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MPP Smith ejected amid heated debate

MPP Todd Smith, PC Energy Critic

UPDATED –
Heated debate over the provincial Liberal’s new advertising blitz for lower hydro rates got Prince Edward Hastings MPP Todd Smith escorted out of the legislature Tuesday.

Monday, the PCs asked the Speaker of the House to find the government in contempt because the campaign is under way before the legislation to cut the rates has been introduced.

Smith, the PC Energy Critic, was standing ground Tuesday and continued to make points on the issue of the Liberals spending taxpayer money for self-congratulatory advertising for a plan that has not yet been passed.

“The recent actions by the government with regard to advertising are unacceptable,” said Smith, noting the Minister of Energy admitted Monday that the government had spent close to a million dollars already in advertisements.

“Let us be clear, this is an exercise being undertaken by the government to improve its political fortunes not to inform Ontarians about new programs. The ad mentions no new programs that people can access or ways to access them.”

Advertising on radio stations across the province tells listeners people will receive an average of 25 per cent off their hydro bills this summer. Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk said Friday the ‘pat-on-the-back’ ads likely wouldn’t have been approved under old rules changed by the Ontario Liberals in 2015.

Ontario PCs say the ads are in contempt of parliament since no legislation has been tabled or passed. The Liberals contend it’s important to let everyone know the 25 per cent reduction is coming. The Speaker will rule at a later time.

Lysyk cautioned in her previous annual report the rule change would end up with taxpayers footing the bill for millions of dollars in partisan advertising.

Smith said that if the government wishes to campaign, it is free to do so with the money in Party coffers.

“It should leave taxpayers, and electricity ratepayers, since they’re usually the same person that they have already overburdened, out of it. Taxpayers should know exactly how much of their money the government is spending on these ads and whether the government will actually restore the Auditor General’s ability to reject ads viewed as inappropriately partisan.

“It was this concern that I felt needed to be emphasized in Question Period.”

Speaker Dave Levac threatened to expel Smith Tuesday over the incident but stopped short and warned the House he would not tolerate any disrespectful behaviour. Expulsion would have left Smith out of the house for the session (until June). MPPs often get ejected for a day, but expulsion is more rare.

 

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  1. Susan says:

    And have the Conservatives offered any alternatives since they deregulated our Ontario Hydro? Easy to complain, tougher to offer solutions to a problem they share the blame for in creating.

  2. Arnie says:

    Good for MPP Smith. Something needed to be said – he may have gone a little over the top, but having to listen to them day after day lying about what they are going to do to “help” us with our Hydro Bills. I don’t think I would have been able to keep my mouth shut either.

  3. Paul says:

    MPPs of all stripes need to relax and represent their constituents in a respectful manner. Mr. Smith isn’t the only one guilty of losing his composure in the legislature. All parties are guilty of this lack of decorum and its embarrassing or should be embarrassing for all Ontarians…

  4. This is nothing new every party has used money to blow their own horn .Harper was the worst offender I’d decades

  5. hockeynan says:

    Agree 100%

  6. Susan says:

    MPP Smith apologized to the Speaker, Dave Levac on his return the next day. He should apologize to his constituents as well for embarrassing our riding. He came very close to being expelled until the end of June which would have left us with no representation. If you are auditioning to replace the present Government I am not sure such a hot headed demeanour is conducive to good government.

  7. hockeynan says:

    Carrying on like that isn’t doing your job.

  8. Dee says:

    I applaud you Mr. Smith for doing your job !!!!

  9. Paul says:

    Has anyone seen or heard the Conservatives solution to the Hydro mess we’re in ? Mr. Smith isn’t much good sitting outside the Legislature looking in,we need him in the House holding the Liberals to account. All of our elected officials need to show more decorum many where warned including Mr. Smith who was then named and ejected from the Legislature and still felt the urge to continue his tirade it was a sad sight….

  10. ADJ says:

    Poor Susan…read all the posts again…no one said bring back the Conservatives, But do not give the Libs a majority either.Unfortunately the rurals are fighting that GTA voter but maybe not the next time around.

  11. Grace Joubarne says:

    There is no way to stop the swindling of our lives and wealth…no way but to build a new party that will swear allegiance to the people. ALL parties swear allegiance to the Queen and their job is to enrich her, by taxing and keeping us in servitude. They say what they need to say in order to continue to make us think they are working for us, but the facts say differently. They cannot swear allegiance to the Queen and to us. The Queen earns nothing, yet she is the richest person in the world at $81 Trillion in worth. The United Party of Ontario has all the evidence and all the solutions and IS willing to swear allegiance only to the people of Ontario. However, Wynne is making it very difficult for new parties to get a foothold…eg. arbitrary demands for 1,000 endorsement signatures! So, if you want to make changes, start here: http://www.ChangeOntario.com . We have to stop thinking we have no choice…we make a choice, plain and simply. Or stop complaining.

  12. Sue3 says:

    @Susan – I agree that there were problems. Amalgamation was and is a disaster. But the current government also had the option of allowing townships within a municipality to de-amalgamate, and that hasn’t happened.

    Unfortunately we only have a choice between two parties in this province – regardless of how many other parties throw their hats in the ring, it will come down to either the liberals or the conservatives.
    You can sum up the problems the conservatives caused in one paragraph.
    With the current liberal government, it would take a book.
    Our only choice is to elect the lesser of two evils, which at this time is the conservatives.
    And just for the record – until this bunch got in I had been a life-long liberal voter.

  13. Susan says:

    Oh yes, and put the Tories back in. Wait a minute! Didn’t they amalgamate hospitals, amalgamate municipalities, deregulate our former Ontario Hydro, download highways such as 49 to the municipality? Ah yes, it was the Conservatives. They just figure the average Joe has forgotten and by the looks of this string of posts many have. Careful for what you wish for.

  14. Sue3 says:

    We’d all be further ahead if they would just ‘eject’ the entire liberal government.

  15. ADJ says:

    He is the energy critic and I applaud him for being loud and in the face of these shysters that think their “gifts” are going to buy them more votes next election. He spoke the truth and any other approach would go un-noticed. And don’t think Ms.Wynn didn’t feel the heat. She’s not fooling anyone and she needed to be exposed.She knows what her popularity is right now and is fighting for her job and re-election.

  16. paul says:

    Way to go Todd.. While I find all conduct in the Legislature to be “childish at best”, I found it refreshing that Todd would “fight” for his constituents in this manner.

  17. Robert says:

    Outstanding to stand up for the rights of the working class. The liberals are nothing, but criminals and thugs.

  18. Adam Ant says:

    I would not expect anything less from him. I hope that his party looks at this before election time and put someone with more class in this position.

  19. Mike says:

    Your dead wrong Susan. The dishonour is the Liberal Members sitting in our house PRETENDING to work for the people’s good when all they are really doing is lining their pockets, and the pockets of their lobbiests. Now they’re trying to suck the public into re-electing them all by making us think they are improving our lives. DON’T FALL FOR IT!!!!

  20. kevin says:

    Susan, sounds like Smith was open, honest and transparent as possible. Something the liberals know very little about. Lysk can see through it too!

  21. Susan says:

    Embarrassing spectacle today by our MPP who seems to stop at nothing to gain attention. Being escorted out of the Legislature is no honour.

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